The Genius of Photography sets out to explore – through some of the key events, personalities and images that have marked the development of the medium – what the essence of the part-art, part-science is.
Six short chapters set the evolution of photography in its social context, but at the heart of the book is a quest to understand what makes a truly great photograph. And the twenty or so iconic images chosen to illustrate each chapter are examined and explained in essays that place them within the many unfolding stories of photography while illuminating the underlying issues the book addresses. Can we ‘believe’ what a photograph shows us? Why is a photograph more than the sum of its subject-matter? How does the photographer deal with history? Why is photography the melancholy art?
Provocative and enlightening by turns, Gerry Badger’s critical perspective and keen aesthetic sense will make this a landmark book for anyone who wants to know more about one of the most important artforms of the twenty-first century. The Genius of Photography was originally published to tie-in with a BBC series.